I'm willing to move where ever God wants us to." Gina said the other evening, as we were discussing our lives here in the Philippines.
Submission to God for an unknown future is a difficult lifestyle of trust in action. Last year, I asked my family to leave our predictable, safe, and comfortable life in Oregon. I asked them to leave friends, ladies' Bible studies, children's church, AWANAs, their pets, Foster Lake, bike rides as a family, the BMX park, their library, homeschool coop, their Fossil Distance Learning teacher, and their church. And, you know what? By God's grace, they did.
God has a calling on our lives. We've followed that calling, first as a married couple and then as a family, for almost 18 years. God has always, always provided for us financially, emotionally, and spiritually. The calling of Jesus in our lives has always been to reach the lost, and disciple believers.
We're in a vulnerable place now in our timeline of following God's calling because we've given up the safety net of family, friends, and employment. In a few years, we'll probably be in a more predictable season. For now, we walk by faith.
Like in the States, there are amazing times, as well as stressful experiences. Unlike in the States, these experiences seem to dig deeper emotionally. This requires us to sink our roots deeper into the word of God, and into the character of Jesus Christ. Walking into the unknown requires faith in our known, yet unseen God.
Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy. 1 Peter 1:8
Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails. Proverbs 19:21
Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him. Psalm 126:5-6
The Christian life requires us to crucify ourselves in order to live out life that Christ has given us. For most of us, this is a slow death to self as we walk our path, holding the hand of the Holy Spirit tightly. Our move to the mission field magnified this reality for the moment, making us more aware of the need to crucify our own desires.
Where ever you are in your timeline of grace, dig deep into your relationship with Jesus Christ. As you build your experiential trust in and faith in God, you'll move forward in living out the life of service to Christ. Put on your armor of light and bring hope to those who live in darkness.